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There are numberless other instances of lem. These are, perhaps, the three most the manner in which some of the inci- horrible reports of outrages that have dents of the past few months in Ireland been published, and these three reports have been distorted by the Tory party. are all false. The brutal murder of Lord Mountmor- The object of the Tory leaders in exres has given birth to a cycle of horrible aggerating these reports is, of course, legends. It is not true, for instance, perfectly intelligible. A reform in the that a number of young men danced in land system can only be prevented by his blood-a terrible story, that owes its raising such a feeling against Ireland in existence, I am informed, to the invent- England as will encourage the Whigs ive brain of an official who employs his and Tories in the lower House and the leisure in writing the vilest and most House of Lords to reject any bill brought calumnious caricatures of his country- in by Mr. Gladstone and his colleagues; Inen. Nor is it true that Lady Mount- for, without an overwhelming unanimity morres was refused provisions because of opinion among the English people of hate to her unfortunate husband ; she outside Parliament on such a subject, was refused provision, but for a very even the present powerful Ministry different reason. Among the other would be powerless inside the walls of most notable outrages which have been Parliament. Secondly, the Tory leadmanufactured I may mention three ers have calculated on driving the Govwhich stand out from the rest. (1) The ernment into coercion, and the intropapers published a report that the ears duction of coercive legislation would of a man had been cut off near Lough- produce a chasm between the Ministry rea; the report caused everywhere and the Home Rule members which natural and just horror. No man's ears might be perilous, if not fatal, to the were cut off at Loughrea, or in any
chances of a Land Bill. These are the other part of Ireland. (2) It was re- true reasons which have influenced the ported that a man had been attacked by speeches of the Tory leaders; and while three desperadoes near Macroom, and we may doubt the honor or honesty of that, among other outrages upon his per- such tactics, they are intelligible in a son, the unfortunate man's throat had despotic oligarchy which is in the throés been cut. It has since been proved that of dissolution. the unfortunate creature had inflicted The second reason why the impresupon himself the injuries from which he sion of the amount of crime in Ireland suffered. (3) It was reported that a is so completely erroneous is the attiwoman had been carded” near Lough tude of the press. In these days the Mask because she had in some way fate of nations depends upon the exigenhelped Captain Boycott. No woman cies of newspapers. It so happened that was "carded" at Lough Mask, or any- this Irish agitation in its most acute stage where else in Ireland. Ex pede Hercu- was coincident with the rise of Parlia
ment and the set-in of the silly sea
son.” Irish outrage became the article declares that they were heard by its reporters, I unhesitatingly accept Mr. Gibson's denial,
in demand in the English journalistic and I do so the more readily because I can con- market, and the supply was forthcomfirm from my own experience at public meet. ing. I do not accuse the Liberal jourings the statement that the speaker rarely nals of England of being wilfully the hears such interruptions; or, if he hears them, medium of slander is so absorbed in what he has himself to say
and invention, that he does not think of noticing them. Mr. though I confess some disappointment Parnell has assured me that he very seldom at observing the depths of their creducatches these cries, which make so prominent lity, and the lightness of heart with a figure in the newspaper reports. Mr. Gib.
which many of them have proposed the son and his friends can scarcely deny to Mr. Parnell what they claim for themselves; yet abrogation of all the liberties of the be it remarked that the charge of inciting to Irish people. Still less do I blame assassinate, which so many Tory writers and the attitude of certain classes of the speakers have made against Mr. Parnell, has English people. What means had been grounded, not on anything he himself they of knowing what was the state of said, but on the cry of some single drunken or insane fool in the crowds of many thou
Ireland but through their newspaper ? sands which Mr. Parnell has not heard. and how could they know that their newspapers were misinformed ? The these vast differences between the two chief blame for the falsification of Eng- periods are directly attributable to the lish opinion rests with those Irishmen existence of the Land League. who supply the English press with their Beyond this, the Land League has news.
rendered inevitable a radical settlement I have now, I think, succeeded in of the land question ; has transformed a overthrowing the vast superstructure of whole race of hereditary, despairing, error with regard to the object of the and impotent slaves into hopeful, selfLand League and the means which it reliant, and almost omnipotent freehas employed. Let me shortly sum up men ; and has shaken to its base a foul, my conclusions.
plundering, and murderous tyranny of Comparing the present with the last centuries' duration. This-one of the epoch of distress, we find (v) that most marvellous and gigantic revolutions while in the first epoch 300,000 are said of any time—Mr. Parnell and the Land to have died in one year of famine or League have accomplished through a pestilence, there is in the second epoch practically peaceful revolution, by conno known case of absolute death from stitutional agitation, and in the space of either cause ; (2) while in the former eighteen months. epoch evictions amounted in one year to Such are the high crimes and mis300,000, eviction at the present moment demeanors against the Irish people for is practically arrested ; (3) while in the which Mr. Parnell and his colleagues former epoch a large amount of eviction are about to be tried in a criminal court led to the commission in one year of in the capital of their country. -Conninety-six murders, there have been but temporary Review. five murders in the present year; and
MR. WALLACE'S “ISLAND LIFE.'
BY PROFESSOR GRANT ALLEN.
Every great scientific theory passes note now refuses to believe in the devel. through two stages, the inductive and opment of all living plants and animals the deductive. First of all it is built up from one or more simple original types. by an accumulation of facts and infer- Even our bishops hint a possible acceptences; the facts are traversed, the in- ance, and hesitate a mild dissent only as ferences are disputed, and a great battle to certain real or supposed implications. rages over its general acceptance. But At any rate, the scientific world has as time goes on the induction becomes long since got beyond the stage of argucomplete ; assailants are won over or si- ing over Darwinism, and has taken the lenced, or else die off ; a younger gen- wiser and more fruitful course of apply. eration is brought up in the new faith ; ing Darwinian principles to the explanaand the doctrine passes at length as an tion of hitherto unsolved biological probascertained truth into its deductive lems. Mr. Wallace was one of the first stage. Henceforth, instead of being writers who thus abandoned the barren fought over, it becomes an accepted field of disputation for the real work of principle for the interpretation of other extending and tracing the consequences facts in nature. Such has been the his- of the new discovery. From the motory of the Copernican theory, the New- ment when the great secret of natural tonian law of gravitation, and the Dal- selection first flashed upon his mind in tonian theory of atoms; such in our the Malay Archipelago, as it had flashed own time is the history of Mr. Darwin's upon Mr. Darwin's mind years before hypothesis of natural selection, and Mr. on reading Malthus, he has, apparently, Herbert Spencer's theory of evolution. had no doubts as to the final triumph of Practically speaking, nó biologist of the truth. It was inevitable that in the
end fresh facts and new explanations * " Island Life.” By Alfred Russel Wal. must break down the resistance of the lace. Macmillan & Co. 1880.
old school ; so instead of troubling him
self by adding further arguments to the Asia, Africa, and America. These plavast accumulation gathered by Mr. Dar- cental mammals quickly lived down the win, he set himself to employ the evolu- less specialized and developed marsutionist hypothesis, one of whose authors pials, of whom the opossums in America he might fairly claim to be, in the de- at last remained the sole representatives ductive explanation of zoological and on either great continent. But before botanical distribution. The results of the rise of the plecantal group, Australia his work he has already given us in had become insulated from the neighmore than one form ; and his new vol- boring lands, with which it has never
Island Life” contains his since had any direct connection. Aclatest views on the subject set forth in cordingly the higher mammals never a clear and popular manner which should reached Australia at all till a few of make them accessible to many readers them were carried there by man---the who would not venture on the perusal of dingo by the black fellows; the horse, his more strictly scientific expositions. cow, and sheep by the European coloMoreover, the limitation of his subject nists. But, on the other hand, the marsuin his new work to the special case of pials had room to develop into numerislands allows him to deal with those ous special forms, such as the kangaminor differences which are classed as roos, the Tasmanian devil, and the specific merely, while his former vol. wombats ; because they were not kept umes were restricted to the wider differ- down, as in Asia and America, by the ences which characterize genera. Thus competition of superior types. Thus “ Island Life" is essentially a new the mere peculiarities of the Australian work, both as containing many later and fauna sufficiently show us that Australia more matured views, and as treating of has never been united with Asia since a comparatively fresh and more limited the rise of the placental mammals—that
Mr. Wallace has written nothing is to say, at latest, since the end of the more clear, more masterly, or more con- cretaceous period, and probably far vincing than this delightful volume. earlier ; for if it had been so united, we
Evolution is the key to distribution. know that some of these superior forms Every great type must have originated must have invaded it, with the probable in some particular spot, under the infiu- result of exterminating its native marsuence of certain special conditions ; and pials. from that spot it must have dispersed This familiar instance may be taken itself in various directions, according to as typical of the class of questions with the means of transport, and have under- which Mr. Wallace undertakes to deal. gone greater or less modifications to suit It sufficiently exemplifies the two main its altered habitats. At a very remote elements in the problem, of which one period, perhaps up to the dawn of the is biological and the other physical, the Eocene, Europe and Asia were peopled latter, of course, being at present most in by no mammals except marsupials, like need of explanation. But the physical the kangaroo and the opossum. At that question, again, depends mainly upon period Australia had some land commu- the changes undergone by our earth in nication with the rest of the world, and past times. We have to consider, not it thus acquired a population including merely the existing distribution of land these marsupials, then probably the fore- and water, of polar ice and tropical formost type of animals upon the earth. est, of glaciated mountains and warm At the beginning of the tertiary epoch ocean currents, but also their previous a new and higher type of mammals, the distribution throughout the whole hisplacental, appeared upon the scene in tory of our earth. To recur once more the great eastern continent, and soon to the example of Australia : if that wholly overran it. Splitting up first into great isolated land had ever been joined sundry primary groups of hoofed and to the mainland of Asia since the beginhoofless creatures, it shortly produced ning of the tertiary period, then we all the various races of ruminants, should find it now inhabited by mamhorses, elephants, carnivores, insecti- mals of the common Asiatic types. On vores, rodents, and apes, which spread the other hand, if it had ever been rapidly over the whole extent of Europe, wholly submerged at any one time since the date of its separation, we should find water approximately represents the disit wholly devoid of land mammals, such tribution throughout an immense period as the kangaroo and the other marsupials. of past time, at least ever since the The old-fashioned geologists would have opening of the secondary epoch. It is led us to suppose that Australia had true that the earliest secondary deposits been sunk boldly beneath the ocean half are quite modern in age, compared with a dozen times in that interval, and had the whole lapse of time since the first been joined again sometimes to a great evolution of life upon the earth, but Antarctic continent, sometimes to South then we are little concerned with the America, sometimes to Asia, sometimes, distribution of those lower and chiefly perhaps, to some vast mountain region marine forms of life which existed alnow buried beneath five miles' depth of most alone in the long primary epoch ; the Pacific. But if this were so, the while we are greatly interested in the fauna of Australia would be wholly dif- higher and chiefly terrestrial forms ferent from what it is at the present which first appear in the secondary and day. We should find in it fragments of tertiary epochs—the birds, mammals, all the other faunas which were once and flowering plants. Mr. Wallace himable to invade it ; instead of which we self believes that the continents have find a very ancient, very peculiar, and always existed since paleozoic times in wholly endemic fauna, having no resem- a circle around the North Pole, with blance to anything which has existed in three southward extensions, as at presany other country since the later Eocene ent; but he thinks they have undergone age. Thus the existing distribution of a constant development, which only organic forms is at once a clew to the reached its full form at the glacial period. former distribution of land and water, Hence the real and practical quesand itself a result of that distribution. tion for our present purpose resolves itWe can infer the cause from the effect; self into this-what evidence have we of though we are often able to bring up the comparative permanence of our independent evidence which forcibly oceans and continents throughout the strengthens and confirms our inferences. secondary and tertiary epochs ?
Everything then depends upon the To this question Mr. Wallace has alquestion whether, in the past, continents ways given satisfactory answers, which and oceans, have had anything like per- he now recapitulates and strengthens manence, or whether they have been in by further arguments. The continents that perpetual state of Aux and inter- which we see at the present day have change which the old geologists im- probably almost always occupied much agined. If a deep sea now and then occu- the same positions as those which they pies the site of the eastern continent, occupy in our own time. It is true every from England to Japan ; if a vast main- part of them has at one time or other land occasionally bridges over the Pa- been under water ; but still these subcific from China to Patagonia ; if an merged parts were, nevertheless, high open ocean often fills up the north tem- submarine banks lying in the immediate perate region, while a system of conti- neighborhood of dry land. They were, nents gathers around the south pole- in fact, parts of continental bosses, then, of course, the task of tracing out slightly depressed beneath sea-level. It the interactions between organic evolu- seems likely that from a very early tion and geographical features would be period the three great oceans--Atlantic, inpossible. But we have seen already Pacific, and Indian-have filled the that in the case of Australia the fauna same deep hollows in which they now itself sufficiently points out the true lie. It seems equally probable that two facts of geological history ; and the or three great masses of land, compactly faunas and floras of the larger continents grouped around the North Pole, and also tell a similar though slightly varied tapering toward the South, sometimes tale. Mr. Wallace, however, does not united and sometimes separated by shalrely entirely or even mainly upon argu- low seas, but always essentially connectments of ihis nature. He shows by ed with one another, have almost invari. several independent lines of reasoning ably occupied the positions now held that the present distribution of land and respectively by Europe, Asia, and North
Africa, by South Africa and by North represented as a typical deep-sea deposit, and South America. Even Australia he shows that its chemical composition seems to have been relatively constant in differs considerably from that of the position ever since the beginning of the modern oceanic gobigerina ooze ; while Eocene age, and probably far earlier. similar ooze from coral reefs and other It should be added, however, that Mr. shallow places resembles it much more Wallace alleges reasons for believing in closely. Dr. Gwyn Jetireys, one of our the permanence of the actual continents leading authorities on the mollusca, deeven in palæozoic times.
clares that the chalk fossils are distinctAround all our existing continents ly shoal water forms. Moreover, even there runs a belt of shallow water about the chalk is found only in a compara100 fathoms deep. Sometimes this belt tively restricted belt of Europe, from stretches only 20 miles from the shore; Ireland to the Crimea, and from Southmore often it extends 100 miles ; and in ern Sweden to Bordeaux, The sea ir a few cases it forms a long bridge of sev- which it was formed was, therefore, eral hundred miles between one conti- probably an earlier and somewhat larger nent and another. The depth of 1000 Mediterranean, extending across Central fathoms, marking what may fairly be Europe, and bounded by the Scandinacalled deep sea, sometimes approaches vian Highlands, Russia, Austria, and within 30 miles of the actual coast, and South Germany, and the south of sometimes recedes to 100 miles or more. France. In like manner the large numThe shallow ledge which thus fringes ber of fresh-water and shore deposits and often unites mainlands may be re- found in all countries also proves the garded as in reality a submerged or non- comparative permanence of the great emerging portion of the continent. land areas. Now, the dredgings of the Challenger The permanence of oceans, even more have shown that sedimentary deposits, important, perhaps, in its implications consisting of detritus from the land, are than the converse truth, is shown by only collected as a rule within about 50 equally cogent arguments.
As Mr. or ioo miles of the coast, the finest mud Darwin remarks, hardly one truly ocebeing rarely carried to a distance of 150 anic island possesses even a fragment of or 200 miles. Beyond this point the palæozoic or secondary formations-a ocean bed is covered with sediment of fact which clearly proves that the ocean purely organic origin, consisting of bed from which they have been elevated small siliceous and calcareous shells. has never at any time formed part even Hence it follows that by far the larger of the littoral belt surrounding a contipart of all stratified deposits, and cer- nent. Had continents or continental tainly all those containing sand, pebble, islands ever existed in their neighboror visible fragments of rock, must have hood, they would almost certainly have been formed within 50 or 100 miles of produced sedimentary deposits, as we then existing continents, or else in in- know them to have done and to be still land seas, receiving the waters of great doing in the littoral belt of existing rivers. But such rocks-sandstones, lands. Moreover, the deposits now belimestones, conglomerates, and shales- ing formed in the deep seas are wholly occupy the centre of all our great conti- different from anything to be found in nents; and they were probably, there the formations which compose our confore, deposited either in arms of the tinents. ocean, like the Mediterranean and the Thus we find that our existing distriRed Sea, or in vast inland lakes, like bution of land and sea has persisted in the Caspian. Professor Geikie has al- the main throughout all time. But endready pointed out the arguments in fa- less changes of detail have taken place vor of the littoral origin of the palæo- from age to age ; and upon these changes zoic rocks; and Professor Ramsay's the distribution of animals and plants inaugural address to the last meeting of depends. Mr. Wallace will have noththe British Association points in the ing
ing to do with those cheap and easy exsame direction. Mr. Wallace adds sev- planations which consist in running up eral fresh arguments of like implication. a hypothetical continent across the bed Even as regards the chalk, generally of a vast ocean whenever you wish to New SERIES.-Vol. XXXIII., No. 2